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Discussion in 'The Cutting Room Floor' started by Thread Manager, Sep 13, 2016.
This is a continuation thread, the old thread is [split]513283[/split]
This is a continuation thread, the old thread is [split]509343[/split]
How I see it...
Suicide Squad was flawed, but enjoyable.
BVS was flawed, in large part because it wasn't very enjoyable, even with a few bright spots.
X-Men Apocalypse was flawed, but at least gave us another Quicksilver sequence.
Harley is an inherently pathetic character. She's purely a victim. By herself, by Joker, even by Batman. She exists as a punching bad stuck in a cyclically abusive relationship. It gets disguised by its cartoonish nature but it's really a tragedy. I don't know if I've seen many stories that go into how messed up Quinn's existence actually is. And it makes it weirder how much of a sex symbol she is.
The way I see the Suicide Squad portrayal of The Joker is that it was meant to show him through Harley's eyes and the rose-colored glasses she carries for him. He's a sexier Joker, he's more loving toward her, most of the time we spend on him, we're seeing him from her POV.... and, taking into consideration the source material of Harley in BTAS (I haven't read many of the comics based around her), that fits. She doesn't see him as a guy that treats her like s*** or even, necessarily, as a bad guy. He's just her puddin'.
The problem is the movie never breaks the illusion and shows us the actuality. And I don't know if that's something they intended to do and s*** just got cut (the hack-job of the movie's editing and Leto's comments about how much of his work was cut could make this a real possibility) or if what we saw was what we were always meant to see, but it was a missed opportunity for the duo's screen debut.
That's an interesting theory about the Joker in SS. Although we do see him obsessing over her in one scene where she's not around him so I'm not sure if it works. I do think that approach WOULD have worked though if we, at first, only saw him through her eyes and then towards the end, the horrific reality was revealed. I think that may have been Ayer's original idea but we may never know for sure.
Well, in fairness, the character has not actually been like that for quite some time in the comic canon. She's long since unchained herself from the Joker, even if they still stick them together in some scenarios, she's been her own character for the better part of a decade, at least. And it seems in the DCCU (or whatever it's called) their relationship is different than originally intended, so I'm not sure if any of that really applies much anymore.
@Sawyer. Interesting theory which would explain the fairy tale quality of their scenes together, but I'm not sure that's what Ayers was going for. Also where would that place her enchantress induced fantasy where Harley is dreaming of a "perfect life" with Jared Leto? (I like that Leto was smiling too much in that scene lol, as if there was something still f#$%^d up with his dream version too.)
I also think and really like that since Ledger (including him) they have made an effort to give us a more seductive and more Machiavellian Joker, as in the devil is seductive, more in line with great villains from the past like Norman Bates, Lecter or the reverend Harry Powell from Night of the Hunter. Also to seduce Margot Robbie's Harleen Quinzel you need to have some charm I guess.
But even if it's from her POV, isn't the Joker still going after her? That's separate from what she thinks of him and just the Joker by himself and how he would deal with her, that part of his character is wrong. Even if they didn't show the reality and he's an abusive ****, he still wouldn't try to seek her out like that.
The actual Joker would have just shrugged and gone about his merry way. Harley would have come back into his life eventually but he has other things to worry about. Harley isn't a priority. She's just a convenient tool for him any time he wants.
It's not "wrong," it's a different interpretation.
This is a good point. There's countless versions of these characters -naturally everyone has their own definitive version- but it's important to understand that while we might prefer one in particular there are many others. Some folks first exposure to The Joker will be the Jared Leto version and that might become their personal perspective on how the character 'should be'.
My definitive version of Superman inspires hope and doesn't murder his enemies. He's kindly and talks to even the worst villains before smacking them around. That doesn't make Man of Steel right or wrong, just different.
One can certainly make an argument that there are key features that make a character that character. Particular attributes that without them make it something else entirely. I'd agree to an extent, but then it doesn't anything more than whoever owns the character to say "This is Character X" to make it that character. Joker and Harley's relationship might be a core element, someone may debate that without Joker's abusive approach toward Harley then it is not truly the Joker -but DC Films called it the Joker, so it is.
True. But for me, the character's never made that much sense apart from Joker. Her dalliances with Ivy or Catwoman are interesting, but she always comes back to the Joker. And, for the record, I friggin hate the New 52 version.
By different interpretation, do you mean it being valid no matter what? Of course it's a different interpretation. Or not. Or it's just a very badly misused understanding of these characters. A different interpretation doesn't mean it's right. If you do mean a different interpretation means it's valid no matter what, by your logic, a Batman who murders people and uses guns is just a different interpretation and is acceptable. Superman who is a misanthropic apathetic murderer is another interpretation and is acceptable. There is such thing as right and wrong for these characters in terms of their ideas. Joker caring for another human being is as radically misused and misunderstood (and yes, very, very wrong) as a Batman who murders people. My God, it seems like Batman and the Joker should have switched places! If not, I don't know who is still the worst person here. Joker because he enjoys it? Sure. But I shouldn't be comparing Batman and the Joker in terms of them killing. But I digress.
Look, there's no rule book saying you can't make these changes, it's just about what makes the most sense for them and what matches with their fundamentals. Joker is a psychopathic monster who creates horrors and has a sense of humor about it. There is no room for him to suddenly care or have affections for someone. Because it doesn't make sense. Because it's not who he is fundamentally in his values and ideas. Psychopaths just don't text their girlfriends and say, "I'm coming for you," and make it their personal mission to get their companion back. If his goal is to just get her back what then when he gets her back? At this point if he doesn't kill her or seriously abuse her then he is the worst (or best) psychopath in history.
I just think we're giving Ayer too much credit here. This just reminds me of MOS. Superman causing all that property damage and not caring wasn't "Because he's a rookie Superman!11!!" It's because it had a director who didn't understand the character and didn't recognize and question those decisions.
You're aware the original Batman used guns and killed people, right?
I can't agree with you here Doc. There's no 'right' and 'wrong' when it comes to bringing in a new version of any character. If it were a long established version and for some reason within the same continuity a new writer came on board and had Joker falling all over Harley, or a version of Superman who had never killed before suddenly murdering folks left and right, then it'd be a fair point to say this is wrong -this is not what this character does or doesn't do. But bemoaning the traits of a brand new version doesn't make it not-that-character, or somehow wrong, it just makes it a different version.
Heck, no one's saying you have to like it. But this idea that you (or anyone outside of DC) get to decide what is a right and wrong version of The Joker, or any other character, is objectively false.
No matter what? No. But not held to an unreasonably dogmatic standard by people who honestly don't seem to understand these characters have been around for 70 years and gone through multiple, something radically different, revisions? Yes.
James rebutted the rest of what you said above, but I want to point out that Superman has had many intense property destroying battles throughout the years just like MOS in the comics. Truthfully, the final battle and Smallville fights in MOS were far closer to the kind of crazy stuff you see happening in comic battles. If that alone is something you consider 'out of character' for Superman, you may want to really study some about this, because you aren't as familiar with the source as you think you are.
I'm not making the argument there is an absolute version of the character and can never change and one interpretation is always right. By right I mean morally for the character's values and what logically makes the most sense for them. Characters evolve all the time in comics, but what's consistent with their principle values. However, we have to make distinctions as to what kind changes are good otherwise a Spider-Man with an alive Uncle Ben is deemed right and just another interpretation (it'd make a cool "Elseworld" one shot story, but in current canon no)
I remember Saint said somewhere and he hit it on the head, saying it was all about values. He talked about it being like Robin Hood. Sure there's no rule saying he has to rob from the rich and give to the poor, but if you take that away, that just isn't like Robin Hood. That's part of who he is.
Yes, I'm very much aware that Batman originally killed people and used guns. However, Batman has evolved since. It's what happens to characters who first start out and are around for so long. They find their footing and own identity. I'm sure he used guns and killed people because pulp characters back then did the same and Batman wasn't so dissimilar to the likes of The Shadow and The Spider. Sure Batman could use guns and kill people but that doesn't mean it's just not okay. It just doesn't make as much sense. And it's just not a better creative decision. If you disagree then okay, I can't argue with that, but consider this:
How does it make sense for a man, whose parents were murdered by a gun to use guns and murder people himself? With that respect, he'd be no better than the man who murdered his parents. To not see the hypocrisy on his part is stupid. The reason why Bruce is Batman is so he can prevent other people to not become like him. How does a gun and murder fit into all this? A Batman who vows to never kill or touch guns is infinitely more interesting and more sensible than one who uses the easy way out. And separates him from other characters. I think it's disturbing how we're not taking Batman murdering people seriously. It is, especially for someone who's on the side of the good guys in Batman's case. Good people can use guns and kill. Hell Gordon and the GCPD does. But for Batman, it doesn't match him. Him choosing not to touch a gun separates him in his own tendencies and how we know him. That's all do to with why he is dressed up as a Batman and not a cop.
Batman's lore for decades now has used the idea that what only separates Batman from his villains is that he doesn't kill. He could become like them at any moment, but his code prevents that. And he knows if he kills, he'll never come back from it. It's what separates him from the Joker, whom in fact is always trying to make him like him. If he is, the Joker wins. And Gotham loses. Suddenly he kills, so what happens next then? Does any of this change? What does the Joker do? Does Batman just say "lol I had a bad day" and go back to not killing again? What does this all mean? If anyone thinks I'm taking this too seriously, well good. It requires that when someone abandons and violates their tenets like that after all this time.
Now is it the absolute, objective, "right" and "valid" interpretation of Batman? No, there is no rule saying it is nor should there be. That's part of subjectivity. But that doesn't mean a Batman who kills is right and acceptable and a good idea from a value standpoint. And hell, it's A LOT less interesting.
So now I just have to ask, is a Batman who murders and uses guns a better and good idea compared to what I just explained? If you think so then there's no point for me to continue. If that's what you like okay, but just know you're neglecting a consistent lore that's been pretty agreed upon in the past 70 years or so until a ****** movie like BVS came along and disrupted that. If BVS was actually good I MIGHT see why people defend those decisions. If Snyder didn't think like a 15 year old and think all these things out I MIGHT get this. I could give it a little more credit and at the very least, it'd be somewhat of a harder argument. But it's just another case of a director not understanding his creative decisions and people seeing some sort of intention to it when there's nothing there.
I mean, honestly, it sounds dogmatic to me
Okay, so if you're not taking this values from the comics, the original source material, what are you taking it from then?
Honestly, nothing in those battles seemed all that brutal or needless in MOS to me. I didn't really see any direct 9/11 imagery really. I just saw a crazy over-the-top comic book-like fight.
You added this just now, so I will address it separately. You say you're not being dogmatic, but then say stuff like this? What the hell, this is probably the most dogmatic thing I have seen anyone actually say on this subject. It's not a debate that WB doesn't understand these characters? Sorry, guess I missed the grand decree from movie Jesus that the debate was ended and your viewpoint is an indisputable fact now lol. If anything, I think you're showing how little you know about the source of these characters and their histories, particularly Superman, with a lot of your arguments.
Well we're gonna still disagree there. I've explained myself well I'm okay with people making changes to comics and I'm for changing the status quo of things, even stuff like where Spider-Man is like a Tony Stark or had Doc Ock in his body, but something where Batman kills? It's just morally wrong on his part in a character sense. These are different things. Murdering is different than Bruce Wayne losing his whole fortune or Dick Grayson becoming Batman.
I don't understand your second question. Can you elaborate please?
I just don't see how prior to MOS coming out, when people thought of a Superman movie, they imagined seeing little bodies slammed into the ground and Superman not saving anybody.
It bludgeons you to death with this dark imagery. Realize here the difference between that and a comic book fight. It's one thing to see it on the page or in a cartoon, it's another to execute it for reality and be aware of what is actually going on when you make it real. It can be very different. Those aren't just drawings of buildings falling down, in a movie, those are actually buildings falling! What does that mean? The filmmaker has to think all this through. I do think Snyder tried to do create a real life comic book fight. But I don't think he knew what would happen when you'd try to create exactly that for reality. You can't just copy and paste (something he's very good at) from a comic into a movie. You have to understand when making a movie, you have to direct it and create a context where it can work on its own terms. It takes a lot of skill in directing this.
Okay, but ignoring the context for the sake of doing it the 'right' way is basically the definition of dogmatic.
I don't know how to be clearer really. You go on about values matching up and all of this, but where are you drawing these values that must be upheld by any means necessary if not the source material? Are you just making up your own set of rules that must be followed?
Superman saved the entire planet.
Movies aren't real. What you saw on the screen was no more or less real than what you see on a comic page.
The way I viewed Joker longing for Harley is that it's more of an obsession. Not love.
This Joker clearly has a level of fame. I think he courts it. He loves the status and the power. He enjoys putting on a show and wearing outrageous clothes, driving ridiculous cars.
He's completely narcissistic. This all fits the Joker character.
I think he's obsessed with the idea of Harley by his side. He corrupted her to be like him. And as the top crime boss he's got to have the baddest ***** by his side. It fits the whole image he's going for. Him going after her is more about his own ego and persona, rather than anything like love. It's also about control and possession. Harley is his, no one else's.
In the club scene he basically pimps her out. Yet it then makes him angry. He wants others to lust after her, but doesn't want to share. Again it's all about ego.
The flashback with Batman. He leaves Harley for Batman so he can get away. Joker clearly puts himself above Harley.
See I think people are over simplifying the relationship by boiling it down to Joker actually loving Harley. Obviously a lot was cut including actual abuse towards her. But I think there is enough to show its a lot more complex than simple love.
Yeah, I think this is a pretty good way of looking at it. Leto's Joker is more in line with the Clown Prince of Crime interpretation of the character I would say.
Is it just me or has this thread just become an extension of the DC Films forum lately?
Nah. Every once in a while there's a tagent that goes to a particular film or film series (DC, Marvel, Star Wars, etc.) but this place is still a lot better